Saturday, November 27, 2010

Britannians - Works in Progress

After completing the painting and "dipping" on the Screaming Panther Clan, I started on the first two "divisions" of the Britannian 5th Regiment of Foot and a mounted officer.  Although this regiment was part of the second contingent sent to fight with His Britannian Majesty's Army in Germania, it will also see double duty fighting the Gallians and Asturians in the 'Murican colonies.

These figures are Dixon, with the classic Dixon "pumpkin head" on the infantry.  Up close the heads do look unusual but I think from a distance in an organized unit that the heads will not be so apparent.  The figures have been primed with gray Liquidtex gesso before I started painting them with acrylic craft paints.  I mount my foot figures on large headed finishing nails and my horses on plastic 2-liter soda bottle caps.  As usual, please click or double click on the images for a larger picture.

Britannian mounted officer
Sergeant and nine hatmen
When I complete these figures, I plan on posting a comparison between the various horse and musket manufacturers I have.

Screaming Panther Clan

I just finished mounting the second of my Gallian allied Indian warbands, the Screaming Panther Clan.  These stalwart braves are primarily Old Glory eastern woodland Indians with a few non-Old Glory castings included.  These twenty five warriors primarily use a yellow ochre as their distinguishing color.

All of these figures were painted with acrylic craft paints, sealed with straight Future floor polish, brush "dipped" with Ace brand walnut wood stain, and then final sealed with Delta Ceramcoat interior matte glaze.  The matte glaze isn't truely matte as it gives a nice satin finish to the figures.  The pictures don't capture that finish, showing them much more glossy that they are.  I think that the light reflections enhance the satin finish so it looks glossy.  As usual. please click or double click on each image to see a larger picture.

The Screaming Panther Clan Chief.
I added a musket to his left hand so that he would be armed as are the rest of his clan.

The Screaming Panther Clan, in all their glory.

The following pictures illustrate all the warriors in the Screaming Panther Clan.

Five warriors in the kneeling, firing pose.
The center figure is not an Old Glory figure, but I don't know who manufactured him.  His size mixes well with the Old Glory sculpts.

A group of five standing, firing warriors.
The center figure is not an Old Glory figure.

The final group of five standing, firing figures.
All of these are Old Glory figures.  To get a little distinction in the blanket that the center figure is wearing, I painted on two darker blue stripes along both ends.  He has also retained the yellow lace on his tricorne since that color is the clan distinction.

A group of six warriors in action poses.
Several of these figures required added muskets.  The two figures flanking the center figure (wearing the green shirt around his waist) are not Old Glory sculpts.

The final three warriors.
These three got different colored tunics to distinguish them from each other.

Evil Warning Totem
The warriors who are included in the Screaming Panther Clan were part of a group I purchased on eBay.  The lot also contained this "shrunken head" totem which I painted dark brown to represent smoked and dessicated skin.  I also "equipped" the head with oversized front teeth to give it a fearsome appearance.

I can also use these figures in my Capitania General de Florida games as Southeastern Indians, either Allied with Britannia or with Asturias.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Two New Officers

I just added two new officers to my imagi-nation forces.

Marechal-de-Camp Francois Lucien, Comte de Merlot, Commander of the Gallian expeditionary corps to the Imperium's Reichsarmeeabteilung Obere-Sachsen.

He is an Old Glory French and Indian War mounted French officer that I purchased as part of an e-Bay lot.

Oberstleutnant Freiherr Hans von Stuppe is the commander of the Carpanian von Stuppe Hussar Regiment.  His uniform is based on the Germanian 8th (later 7th) Hussar Regiment, the "Canaries."  He is the older son of General der Infanterie Baron Rolfe von Stuppe, commander of the Carpanian army.

He is a Front Rank figure, Prussian hussar officer in mirleton.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Project - Figures to be Painted

Ed of Hesse Fedora asked in the last post how many figures I'll be painting in my project towards a Big Battalions game at the 2012 Bayou Wars convention.  I've made up a painting schema so I can track my progress.  From that schema I have the following troops and equipment to paint.  These figures include some of the figures I'll be painting for the French & Indian Wars game I'll be running at the 2011 Bayou Wars convention.

          2 mounted officers
     476 infantry
     119 cavalry
       52 gunners, 10 guns, and 8 limbers (each with 1 or 2 horses plus a drover)

         4 mounted officers
    528 infantry
    120 cavalry
      51 gunners, 6 guns, and 6 limbers ( each with 1 or 2 horses plus a drover)

If I can acquire the appropriate Miniature Figurines Seven Years War figures at not too high a price, I'll paint the following additional forces:

         2 mounted officers
      24 infantry
      48 cavalry

      36 cavalry

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Imagi-Nation Project

In November 2008, I attended the MilleniumCon convention in Round Rock, TX (north of Austin) and participated in the Big Battalions in Texas Seven Years War battle using Bill Protz's Batailles de l'Ancien Regime (BAR) rules.  It was a lot of fun.  I got to bring some of my imagi-nation troops and commanded part of them in battle against the rules author.  Ever since I've wanted to participate in another "big battle" but wasn't able to fit any of them into my schedule even though I ran a couple of small games for my wargames group last year.  But after inventorying all my various boxes of unpainted SYW lead I've come to the conclusion that I might have enough infantry and artillery to form a core of an order of battle for a "big battalions" game at our regional convention, Bayou Wars.  Now I don't have enough painted for the convention this summer, but might have enough for 2012.

So that's my project -- paint enough of my own troops to form a core around which other gamers can contribute their own forces to conduct an imagi-nation game in Germania (AK Germany) that would pit a Britanno-Germanian army against a Gallo-Imperium army using a scenario based on the 24 June 1762 Battle of Wilhelmsthal.  The "official" announcement will be after the 2011 Bayou Wars convention when I'll be able to measure tables and get approval from the Bayou Wars Board of Directors for the game.

And the challenge will be to hold to a schedule of 24 infantry or 12 cavalry or their equivalent per week. Can I do it?  Or will I get painter's burn-out?  Only time will tell, stay tuned to periodic reports.

The schedule begins with completing my French and Indian War figures first (thankfully some will be used for the 2012 battle), which will occupy me through the end of January 2011.  I'll begin the main drive the first of February 2011 with completion aimed at the end of March 2012.  An audacious plan but one that I believe I can accomplish.

Now back to the paintbrush.

Gunners and Some Comparisons

First I have some pictures of the newest additions to my imagi-nation armies, some guns and gunners.  Then some comparison pictures of the three manufacturers' gunners.  As usual, click or double click on the pictures for larger images.

I've just completed three gun crews and two guns (the third gun having been painted some time ago) for my Britannian, Gallian, and Kreis Obere-Sachsen forces.

First up is a Britannian 6-lbr and its 5 man crew.  The gun is a Miniature Figurines (if I remember correctly) model while the gunners are RSM-95 figures.  This is the second 6-lbr for my nascent Britannian forces.

Next up is a battalion gun for my Gallian forces.  The gun is a "Scruby" (now manufactured by Historifigs) small Napoleonic cannon which will be playing the role of a "Swedish" style 4-lbr.  The crewmen are RAFM French gunners painted as two artillerymen (in blue coats) and two artillery laborers (in grey coats).

Last is a battalion gun (another "Scruby") for my nascent Kreis Obere-Sachsen forces (one of the Reichsarmee circles).  The gunners are Miniature Figurines SYW French gunner figures.  The one of the right rear has been modified by cutting off the lintstock and gluing on a lever.  The color scheme comes from a Reichsarmee gunner's uniform posted some time ago by David Linienblatt of the Not by Appointment blog.

I also thought that I would include some side-by-side pictures of the RAFM, RSM, and MiniFig gunners so you could get an idea of their comparative sizes and hefts.

RAFM (left), RSM (center), MiniFig (right)

You can  see that while the RSM gunners are a little taller than the other two, they aren't completely out of scale.  I cheerfully use many different manufacturers on the battlefield and once the action starts, the differences tend to disappear.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Works in Progress

I am currently working on some artillery crews for Britannia, Gallia, and Kreis Obere-Sachsen/Asturia, as well as a couple of mounted officers.

The first is a mounted commander for my Gallian and Asturian forces in the New World.  He will also be available for operations in Germania.  He is an Old Glory mounted French officer who will be getting plenty of gold lace on his uniform coat.  In the back ground you can see the other officer.

He is a Front Rank Prussian hussar officer who is being painted to replicate the Prussian 8th (later 7th) Hussar Regiment (the "Canaries").  The 8th fought in Brunswick's His Britannic Majesty's Army in Germany.  In my imagi-nation world, he will be the commander of the Carpanian von Stuppe Hussar Regiment.

And here he is a little further along in the painting process.  The blue I'm using is a Delta Ceramcoat paint called Ocean Reef Blue.  I painted the shabraque white, then yellow.  Then I drew in the "hound's tooth" pattern with a pencil and painted on the blue.  After this picture was taken I used a 10-0 liner brush to carefully paint the silver piping between the blue and yellow.  The rest of the two-squadron regiment should look very nice on the battlefield.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veterans' Day 2010

On this Veterans' Day, I thought that I would post some veteran related images.  As a veteran myself and the son of a WW2 veteran, this is a special day in which we remember and thank all those who watered the tree of liberty with their blood, sweat, and tears.  Enjoy and please click on each picture to get a larger image.

Yesterday the Experimental Aircraft Association brought their B-17 Aluminum Overcast to Hawkins Field here in Jackson.  Hawkins Field was the original Jackson main airport and is now used for light planes and other special events.  I went out to see there late yesterday afternoon and took these pictures.

Here she is, sitting on the parking apron outside the main airport office.  This particular B-17 didn't participate in any combat missions during WW2 and is one of only a few still in flyable condition.

A forward aspect, showing the chin turret and the top turret.
As a point of pride, the top turret was the fighting position of my father, who was also a flight engineer for a B-17 in the 731st Bomb Squadron, 452nd Bomb Group, 8th Air Force.

Her nose art.

I was standing in the front of the bomb bay looking into the cockpit when I took this picture.  The top turret is above the EAA crewman's head.

A few of the "dummy" bombs the EAA has in her bomb bay, which by the way was extremely narrow.  I had trouble moving through it and can't imagine the contortions a fully kitted-out crewman would have.  The radio position, waist gunners, ball turret, and tail gunner positions are all to the aft of the bomb bay.  Forward of it are the pilots, bombadier, navigator, and top turret gunner.  In effect, the bomb bay almost isolates each part of the crew from the other.

Looking forward from the waist.  I asked the young man to stand there so you could see how restricted the space was.  The silver object in the floor just behind his legs is the top of the ball turret.  Through the doorway is the radio position.

A rear aspect.

I enjoyed another opportunity to go through a B-17 and hope I have more chances in the future.

Also in Jackson is the War Memorial Building.  This edifice was constructed in the 1930s as part of the depression recovery efforts.  Originally it housed the Mississippi office of the Selective Service System and the Mississippi Department of Archives and History.  Now it houses various state-level veteran organization offices.  The front is decorated with two cast concrete friezes which are pictured below.

To the left is a group of WW1 soldiers and an FT-17 Renault tank as they are girded for war.

To the right, the frieze shows the soldiers transitioning from war to peace and converting their "swords" into "plowshares."

In the center courtyard is the tomb of the "Mississippi Unknown Soldier" by which a U.S. flag always flies at half-mast.  In the background you can see part of one of the main doors into the building.

There are three double doors leading into the building made from cast aluminum and decorated with bas reliefs of military emblems.  At the top of each door are bas relief battle scenes relating to our Mississippi history.  All of these decorations are detailed below.

Above the left door are scenes from the battles of Ackia and Buena Vista.

Above the center door are scenes from the battle of New Orleans and the siege of Vicksburg.

Above the right door are scenes from the battle at San Juan Hill and Belleau Wood.

Each door has bas relief medallions framing each window.  All three door pairs are decorated identically.  This picture shows the medallions at the top of the door,

and around the middle windows, and

around the bottom windows.

I hope you enjoyed my "veterans' tour" today.  And remember, please thank a veteran today!

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Rest of the Baltic Fleet

The pictures of the rest of the Baltic Fleet have been posted on ColCampbell's Shipyard.  Please drop by for a look.

3rd Battle Division, 3rd Pacific Squadron

With all my Russo-Japanese War ships now complete, I can return finally to some 18th Century Imagi-nation wargame preparations with two mounted officers and three gun crews before launching into a 56-figure Britannian (AKA British) infantry battalion followed  by a 72-figure Gallian (AKA French) battalion.